WiredGov Newswire (news from other organisations)
Printable version

Wales TUC: 4 in 5 Disabled workers in Wales earn less than £15 an hour

Four in five (79%) Disabled workers in Wales earn less than £15 an hour, according to new analysis of official statistics published by the Wales TUC yesterday 

  • Disabled workers also more likely to be on precarious zero-hours contracts or unemployed than non-disabled workers
  • Union body says ministers have done “bare minimum” on minimum wage and calls for increase to £15 an hour

The analysis – published during disability history month – reveals that 3.09 million disabled workers around the UK are paid under the median wage of around £15 an hour.

Less than three in five (57%) non-disabled workers in Wales are paid less than this amount.

The TUC argues that Disabled workers are over-represented in low-paid work – and says that the new increase in the minimum wage announced by the Chancellor in the Autumn statement doesn’t go anywhere near far enough in lifting workers out of poverty.

Zero-hours contracts

The analysis found that Disabled workers are more likely than non-disabled workers to be employed on a zero-hours contract (4.4% compared to 2.9%) with no guarantee of shifts from one week to the next.

The Wales TUC says zero-hours contracts hand the employer total control over their workers’ hours and earning power.

This means workers never know how much they will earn each week, and their income is subject to the whims of managers.

The union body argues that this makes it hard for workers to plan their lives, look after their children and get to medical appointments.

And it makes it harder for workers to challenge unacceptable behaviour by bosses because of concerns about whether they will be penalised by not being allocated hours in future.

Unemployment

Not only are Disabled workers paid less than non-disabled workers, they are also more likely to be excluded from the job market.

Disabled workers are now twice as likely as non-disabled workers to be unemployed (6.8% compared to 3.4%).

In November, the TUC published analysis showing that the pay gap between non-disabled and Disabled workers has widened and is now 17.2%, or £3,700 a year.

Wales TUC General Secretary Shavanah Taj said: “We all deserve a decent job with decent pay. Being Disabled should not mean you’re employed on a lower wage or on worse terms and conditions.

“As the cost-of-living crisis intensifies, many Disabled workers in Wales are struggling to get by.

“We already know Disabled people face higher living expenses than non-disabled people. And now they're being pushed to the brink with eye-watering bills and are having to choose whether to put food on the table or pay their bills.

“Ministers announced the absolute bare minimum on the national minimum wage and universal credit in the Autumn statement. With living costs soaring, we need to ensure that everyone has enough to get by.

“Let’s put an end to low-pay Britain and get to a £15 per hour minimum wage as soon as possible.

“And it’s also past time to introduce mandatory disability pay gap reporting to shine a light on inequality at work. Without this, millions of Disabled workers will be consigned to years of lower pay and in-work poverty.”

Government action needed

To address low pay, the Wales TUC is calling for the minimum wage to be raised to £15 an hour as soon as possible.

In August, the union body set out a roadmap to a £15 an hour minimum wage and a high wage economy.

And to further support Disabled workers, the Wales TUC wants the government to bring in mandatory disability pay gap reporting for all employers with more than 50 employees.

The union body says the legislation should be accompanied by a duty on employers to produce action plans identifying the steps they will take to address any gaps identified.

Nodyn y golygyddion

  • Disabled workers earning less than £15 an hour (figures from LFS Q3 2021-Q2 2022)   

  

Disabled 

 Non-disabled 

Total employees 

4,298,328 

23,810,496 

Earning less than £15ph 

3,089,678 

12,880,030 

72 

54 

  • Disabled workers earning less than £15 an hour (figures from LFS Q3 2021-Q2 2022) by REGION 

Disability: equality act (GSS harmonised) 

Equality Act Disabled 

Not Equality Act Disabled 

North East 

83 

64 

North West 

80 

60 

Yorkshire and Humberside 

78 

63 

East Midlands 

77 

61 

West Midlands 

85 

58 

East of England 

69 

52 

London 

45 

39 

South East 

65 

48 

South West 

76 

57 

Wales 

79 

57 

Scotland 

73 

54 

Northern Ireland 

82 

67 

The TUC report ‘Raising pay for everyone: A plan for a high wage economy and a £15 minimum wage’ is available here: https://www.tuc.org.uk/sites/default/files/2022-08/Raisingpayforeveryone.pdf 

About the Wales TUC: The Wales TUC is the voice of Wales at work. With 48 member unions, the Wales TUC represents around 400,000 workers. We campaign for a fair deal at work and for social justice at home and abroad.

Original article link: https://www.tuc.org.uk/news/wales-tuc-4-5-disabled-workers-wales-earn-less-ps15-hour

Share this article

Latest News from
WiredGov Newswire (news from other organisations)

Active Wellbeing 2023 is running from 1-28 February